Disney plans to dump trans fat at U.S. theme parks
The Walt Disney Company announced today that it will eliminate the use of trans fat in food served at its U.S. theme parks by the end of 2007. In addition, it will stop licensing food that contains trans fat by 2008.
Trans fats, created through the use of partially hydrogentated oils, are perhaps the nastiest thing one can put in one's body. People need some level of fat and sugar in their diet, but no one needs even a smidgen of trans fat. Fast food chains and large-scale food manufacturers started using trans fat in an an effort to replace saturated fats with more shelf-stable options. Plus, at the time it was believed that trans fats might be healthier than saturated fats.
Now, scientists know that is not the case. Trans fats have been shown to elevate bad cholesterol, lower good cholesterol, and contribute to heart disease. Fast food chain Wendy's recently purged trans fats from its menu, as have many grocery cookie and cracker manufacturers. Yet food industry leaders such as McDonald's have resisted, refusing to substitute healthier frying oils for trans fat-laden ones.
According to a Disney press release, starting this month, kids meals at Disney theme parks will come with milk, juice or water instead of soda pop, and with applesauce or carrot sticks instead of french fries. Parents who want pop and fries for their kids may substitute them by request. In addition, Disney will implement new nutritional guidelines for all theme park meals. The new guidelines will:Limit fat to a maximum of 30 percent of calories for entrees and side dishes, and 35 percent for snacks.
Cap saturated fat at 10 percent of calories for main dishes, side dishes and snacks.
Limit sugar to 10 percent of calories for main dishes and side dishes, and 25 percent of calories for snacks.
I'd love to hear from representatives from other theme parks, especially Universal and Busch, about their use of trans fat and nutritional guidelines for theme park meals. Is Disney's laudable move setting the curve?
Well, it is going to be illegal to use trans fat in Illinois soon, no joke!
So I guess there's not "gold in them thar fries" after all.
Busch wins the PR response contest, sending along a release detailing "healthy options" on the menus at
Well, not totally. According to Dr. Dean Edell, a popular radio host and doctor, all butters and cheeses contain trans-fats. So they can't be getting rid of them all together.
The trace amounts of trans fat that occur naturally in animal products is insignificant compared with the harmful, measureable amounts (greater than 0.5 gram per serving) of trans fat that are found in products made with partially hydrogenated oils.
Well I should have remembered that Sea World had most likelyy the "healthiest" food since a majority of it was not fast food!
Disney is a private business, and can do whatever it wants. But I question the wisdom of this.
Umm, Scott, sorry, but you're wrong. There are legitimate dietary needs for things such as carbs and saturated fats. That many people eat waaaaay too many of them does not negate the fact that some other people do not get enough.
I just wanted to submit a clarification -
Just to add a little bit here: Busch Gardens Europe has been advertising this year about not using trans-fat in it's cooking oil. I'm not sure when they started it, but they definitely were advertising about it all this year. Here's some other information from their website:
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